Auditing, Compliance, Regulation

Triennial audit feedback period begins

Treasury has released a discussion paper to commence industry consultation on its three-year audit-cycle policy for well-run SMSFs.

The paper, released last Friday, reflects feedback and concerns originally expressed when the measure was first announced in the 2018/19 budget to change the annual audit requirement to a three-yearly requirement from 1 July 2019 for SMSFs with a history of good record-keeping and compliance.

Treasury is seeking views on eligibility criteria, key events that may require more frequent auditing and possible transitional arrangements.

“The government recognises that SMSF trustees appropriately face a number of regulatory requirements in administering their funds. However, the government is committed to reducing red tape for SMSF trustees where suitable,” it said.

The industry has until 31 August to submit responses.

The Self-managed Independent Superannuation Funds Association (SISFA) has welcomed the paper and the eight-week consultation period.

“We understand and appreciate that this is a deliberately long time frame in order to ensure the final design of the measure has significant industry input,” SISFA managing director Michael Lorimer said.

“Treasury will also be arranging further roundtables with key stakeholders to take place throughout the consultation period, in which SISFA will be participating.

“Critically, the object of the measure has been clarified and emphasised as incentivising good record-keeping and compliance by SMSFs whilst retaining an optimal level of system integrity and oversight. This stated object is broadly consistent with SISFA’s position on the policy.”

SISFA has already formed an SMSF auditor working group, which is well advanced in its preparation of a submission in response to the policy announcement and this discussion paper.

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